Tuesday, September 8, 2009

All the Things You Never Wanted to Know and the Ugliest Creature in the World

Like I said yesterday, GrafixMuse tagged me for a Meme award. Today I found out I was also tagged by Momma_S from Gardening with Care. Both are very cool ladies and I'm thrilled they enjoy my blog According to the award, here are the rules:

1. Link back to the person who gave you the award
(Easily done)

2. Reveal 7 things about yourself
(Not so easily done)

3. Tag 7 other bloggers at the end of your post and link to them
(Even harder)

...and a few more rules to be discussed later.

The most difficult part of these types of things is that when you read blogs, you tend to have circles of 'friends' who all read each other's blogs which makes rule number 3 difficult. I went back to GrafixMuse's and Momma_S's pages, looked at the people they tagged and who tagged them and who tagged that person etc, and through it all, everyone whose garden blog I religiously read has already been tagged.

*sigh* I can, however, play along with the first and second rules, although the second one is harder to come up with than you would think. Let's see....

1) I'm an English teacher, but I hate writing creatively, however I'm learning how not to automatically hyperventilate when I have to come up with an example for my class. Momma_S says she doesn't like school and I quite understand. We don't teach as things need to be taught, especially English. We teach like everyone is headed to a four year research institution when actually, only a small percentage are. We have students whose goals are to be welders, chefs, auto mechanics or engineers. They don't need to read Beowulf; they don't have use for research essays. What they need are the skills to read and write manuals, instruction booklets, informational pamphlets, inter office memos and the like. Once we realize that no one is going to stop our grown students in a dark alleyway, hold a gun to their backs and demand to know what a gerund is or if a certain prepositional phrase is adjective or adverb, or why Pearl from The Scarlet Letter was able to cross the stream and dart in and out of the sunshine whereas Hester could not, we may be able to improve the quality of the education they receive by making it applicable to their lives.

2) I have an unnatural fear of sand. It gets everywhere and never comes off. It gets between your toes, in the creases of your joints and makes a terrible sound when crushed between your teeth. It holds like super glue whether it's dry or wet and when it is wet you have the distinct possibility of looking like a well cooked tater-tot. Wouldn't you know it that the boy and girl could play hours in the sand. I make someone else clean them up afterwards. I can't do it.

3) My fear of sand is not to be outdone by my fear of loose teeth. Honestly, I can't even write about them. This one's done.

4) I will root for FLA on certain occasions like if they're playing inter-conference games or in a BCS bowl game. Any SEC team is worth rooting for if the situation is right. I will not, however, admit in polite company that I occasionally cheer for FLA.

5) On all other occasions, I bleed Red and Black. GOOOO Dawgs! However, this year I think I'll be crying red and black. Blasted rebuilding year....

6) Banana pudding. That statement stands alone.

7) I used to work for a local Harley-Davidson store after my teaching job on weekdays and on weekends for four years just because I liked the sound. It was something I did for myself, before we had children. The man rides; he has an 84 Electra Glide and an 03 Anniversary Duce, but I've recently stopped. You hear stories that all Harley employees/riders have nick names. Yes, I had a nick name given to me rather quickly, but no it wasn't Skull or Road Kill. Mostly, I was called Teach by the customers (go figure that one), but the other employees that knew I was simultaneously coaching cheerleading (another story entirely) called me Rah-Rah like a pom-pom cheer.

So there you have it, my friends. That's your guide to my life in seven small points.

I watered the garden this afternoon. That obviously means it just rained. It's done that the past four times I've watered. I found the craziest thing on my sweet potatoes in the other corner yard. Get a load of this egg sac:

It was just huge. When I peered under that leaf, I found this:

The sucker was a beast!!! I whisked the monster into the woods, but couldn't bring myself to squish the egg sac, so I broke off the stem, put the sac in a zippy bag and then in the garbage. Who knows if the zippy will contain the little cretins, but at least they'll be in the garbage outside.

That's it for me. The morning comes early. Sweet gardening dreams.


  1. well guess what! You have been tagged again...you are a popular girl! But I bet it is fine to just link back to this one so you don't need to do it again!

  2. Holy Moly, girl! That's a Praying Mantis and they are wonderful to have! I pay the big bucks every year to have the egg cases shipped to me to put in the garden....GO TO THE WOODS AND GET IT BACK, LOL!!!!

  3. or the garbage...the egg case may still be viable if it's not crushed!

  4. Good thing you got us to clean up after the sand and yank out loose teeth!

  5. Wow! How neat. Thanks, Shawn Ann, and good luck with that new youngin'.

  6. The egg case isn't crushed. I'm sure it's still there, but are you serious!? It looked like a mantis, but it was WAAAAYYY larger than anything I've ever seen before. So, you say it's a good guy?

  7. Ok, did some reading. It can be a good guy, but it may also go after other benificial insects, but there's not many of those around here. I'll fetch the sac and put it outside again even though I honestly think that thing eats small children for supper.

  8. Mom, or Dad, whoever that was, you know darn good and well the dentist had to pull almost all of my loose teeth since I wouldn't. Those secondary teeth were nigh on fully grown in by the time the others finally fell out on their own.

    Y'all and the man are on full tooth detail for both rounds. I don't want to talk about it, see it or hear it. Yes, you can hear the squishing squeaky sound of a loose tooth.

    AAAHHH, I can't stand it. I've got to stop talking about it. MAN, I can still feel the squishy-guckiness of my own loose baby teeth. It's just not normal.

  9. Aw, man...you left out "I am completely mortified of bugs in the garden, because I think they will eat my face off, or something". Heh.

  10. You are a hoot! Love those 7 things!

  11. I have never noticed a difference in the amount of beneficials, but they will normally attach their egg cases near a source of food for the larvae, and since beneficials tend not to congregate en masse the way pests do, you many have a gang of bad bugs in the area. I saw mine tearing into a huge hornworm one time, and also munching happily on literally hundreds of squash bugs! I think they are pretty actually, lol, we have one big one who hangs on the back screen door. I assume he is getting flies or skeeters there, but he appears to be watching us (or maybe he's trying to watch tv, lol)! They do get huge!

  12. Oh that's a good girl for your garden (praying mantis)! Put it back if it's not destroyed! I would kill for an egg sac like that in my bean patch. I found 2 little bitties near the tomatoes last meek and was ecstatic. Sometimes they're brown and huge and ugly, but they eat bad bugs just the same.

  13. Dang I want those mantises to lay egg cases for me. I've never seen one in the garden. They do look pretty freaky though. Sometimes freaky is good. Last year I had some huge walking sticks mating in my brambles. Now walking sticks are bad bugs since they eat my brambles but I loved the weird looking things anyway. I left them there.

  14. She is an exotic- probably an Asian Giant Mantis. Our native ones are much smaller. Hard to say if good or bad will come of her, according to research. She will eat beneficial insects, but will also eat herbivores- so her effect may be neutral (besides the bad part about being an exotic). Our native ones, being smaller, cannot eat as many beneficial insects. Ends up they are illegal to sell and/or transport in the US (can you tell I don't want to do stats? :)

  15. Atrox, I was hoping you'd chime in. Thanks!

    I went out this morning and let the ginormous egg sack out where I found it. Hopefully it will do me well and they'll grow up to kill those squirrels that are destroying my radishes.

  16. LOL! A praying mantis big enough to eat squirrels would NOT be something I'd want to meet in MY garden, or anybody else's...

  17. I always though the egg sacs looked . . . well, let's just say "anatomical." I'm on the "mostly beneficial" side -- really, they eat the big bad guys.

    I'm an English teacher too, and I love teaching comp. I like to talk about literature, and discuss ideas, but as far as teaching, give me basic communication and punching up writing any day.

    No motorcycles here, though : )

  18. Really, Stefaneener! I always smiled at your references, but never knew you taught. What level?

  19. I had to giggle a bit at your #1. I bet you are so stressed about creative writing because you know all the rules you should follow. It’s paralyzing you! Ignorance is bliss in my world. I wanted to be a writer when I was a teenager. I love to write, but have rather poor grammatical skills, as you probably already know if you read my blog. Hope it doesn’t make you cringe too badly.

    Thanks for sharing. I enjoyed learning a little bit more about you.